Day surgery: frequently asked questions (FAQs)

I have not had a pre-assessment appointment. What should I do?

If you have not completed a health assessment questionnaire or had any tests regarding your admission, then please contact the Cherwell Unit.

If your surgery will be performed under a local anaesthetic, then a full pre-assessment is not required, but you will still need to come to the Cherwell Unit for an MRSA screen.

Will I need to complete any forms?

You will need to complete a health questionnaire which will be reviewed by a nurse, which will determine which tests (if any) you need.

Why do I have to have tests?

You may need tests to help us to establish whether you need to have day surgery or need to stay in hospital.

Blood tests are needed before certain operations.

For some procedures, further blood tests are required a few days before your planned operation.

The nurse will explain the procedure to you following your assessment.

We screen all patients prior to planned surgery for MRSA.

Where do I go to have these tests?

All tests are carried out within the department.

If you need any further specialist tests, as directed by the anaesthetist, appointments will be made for you in the appropriate department(s).

Do I need to bring any medications?

Yes please - this will allows the nurse to document accurately what medication you are currently prescribed or taking.

You will need to have a supply of your regular medications and painkillers, for example paracetamol, ready at home for when you leave hospital after your operation.

If you require prescribed painkillers these will be issued to you on discharge and you will be given advice about how to take them.

Will I need to wear a pair of anti-embolic stockings while I'm in hospital?

It depends on the type of surgery you will be having.

Your pre-assessment nurse will be able to advise whether you will need to wear them or not.

Each patient will be individually assessed for risk of blood clots, and the risk will determine what treatment you will receive, both in hospital and on discharge.

Can I bring someone with me to the Day Surgery Unit?

Due to the amount of space available in the Day Surgery Unit, we do ask that you are dropped off at the reception area.

A member of staff will contact your accompanying relative or friend when you are ready to go home.

One parent may remain in the department for patients aged 16 years old and under.

Special arrangements can be made for carers.

What will happen if I have nobody to look after me after my operation?

You will need a responsible adult to stay with you at home for 24 hours after the operation.

If you do not have anybody to stay with you it may mean that you will have to stay in hospital overnight.

How will I get home?

You need to be taken home by a responsible adult who can stay with you for 24 hours.

You cannot go home on a bus.

What medications do I need to stop taking before my operation?

If you need to stop any medications prior to your operation you will be advised of this before your operation.

What if I am on warfarin or if am a diabetic?

Warfarin, Clopidogrel and diabetic medication are generally the only medications that need to be stopped prior to surgery, but a nurse will advise you of this following your assessment.

If you are diabetic, you will be given specific information prior to surgery.

What happens if I have high blood pressure?

We may ask you to get this checked by your GP prior to surgery.

If you are known to have high blood pressure you should have it monitored by your GP regularly - especially if you are going to be having an operation.

When should I stop eating and drinking?

This depends on whether your operation is in the morning or the afternoon.

Fasting instructions can be found on your admission letter.

When is my operation going to be?

You will be given a date for your surgery by the Bookings Officer.

This will either be by letter or a phone call.

If your operation is routine, the current average waiting time is about 18 weeks from the time your GP referred you.  

Who should I contact, if I no longer wish to have surgery?

You can contact the Bookings Officer or your consultant's secretary.

Where can I get more information about day surgery?

More information is available in the day surgery patient information leaflets - please ask a member of staff for details. 

Where is the Day Surgery Unit?

This is not in the same location as the Cherwell Unit - it's in the main Great Western Hospital - on the first floor at the west entrance (please see Floor plans).

What happens when I arrive at Day Surgery Unit?

Once you arrive at the unit, a member of staff will let your friend/relative know that we will contact them when you're ready to go home.

You will then be shown to the waiting area, where a nurse will complete all the relevant paperwork with you.

You will be seen by a consultant and an anaesthetist before surgery.

You will then be asked to wait in the waiting area.

Just before your operation, you will be escorted to theatre and asked to change into a hospital gown.

The average wait for theatre is between one and four hours.

The average recovery time for patients having day surgery is 1-5 hours.

What hours is the Day Surgery Unit open?


Are there any lockers to keep my valuables?

Yes, but we recommend that you do not bring any valuables into hospital.


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